How Do You Engage Students Who Don’t Always Apply During the Traditional Periods?

With factors like value, influencers, available information, and well-timed communications, any university can make an impact at the end of the decision-making journey. For higher education marketers, this means that the last few weeks before deadlines are a critical time that some universities may be missing out on.

Read more about the last-minute student recruitment measures, outlined by our friends at Advance Ohio.

Accelerate Intent for Prospective Students

Imagine the Admissions Department of a four year college that can name their desired admissions yield.

Picture an online MBA course that fills to the desired capacity, semester after semester. Envision an ongoing education department that attracts business leaders and keeps them in the pipeline long enough to engage them in returning to school an finishing their degree. With Intent Acceleration, these become reality for the Education industry.

Intent Acceleration is the process of guiding your audience from initial awareness to decision with speed and accuracy.

It’s the process we deploy, the art of combining relevant media, marketing and financial principles to create the most effective and cost-efficient solutions for your marketing team and stakeholders. We integrate science by conducting extensive audience exploration across multiple media and data sources to know your audience from an emotional and logical perspective.

Intent Acceleration blends compelling content, creative design and 360 degree media exposure with effective frequency to influence decision.

 This effort:

  • Pinpoints a consumers exact location within the decision journey
  • Serves the precise creative message at the appropriate time
  • Delivers the optimal call to action to advance the consumer in their journey
  • Clearly convinces consumers to take action in their decision
  • Functions progressively (iterates to adjust) in an ever forward fashion

Manufacturers: Your Customers are Decision-Ready

The rapidly changing B2B marketplace should be serving as a wake-up call for those in the B2B manufacturing industry. In the past few years, we have seen a shift in how B2B buying decisions happen, who the decision makers are in the process, and where these decision makers are getting their information.

Since the advent of the advertising industry, marketers have fed information to customers and customers have made buying decisions based on this information. it was a linear path – people saw an ad, they were interested in the product, so they went to the store and bought it. What’s changed is now, customers are finding information on their own. It is now the marketer’s job to pull that audience in by creating a personalized experience that resonates with the potential customers. The path to purchase is no longer linear – it is a collection of moments that influence a customer to purchase your product. 

There’s no question that everyone is online these days, including B2B audiences. In fact, 94% of B2B buyers conduct some kind of online research during the buying process, and 84% of B2B marketers use social media in some form. Customers are educated and informed, and are looking for vendors who understand their pain points and know about the industry.

Customers are already 57% of the way down the path to a decision before performing an action on a website. Customers are being influenced from many different touch-points, whether it’s through your website, social media, mobile campaigns, or traditional marketing methods. That makes it important for manufacturing marketers to reach their audience through a variety of methods well before the audience reaches out to them.

Profiling Gen Z In the Education Space

The big buzzword is Millennial, these days. But let’s not avoid the up and coming Generation Z! These are the students our educators are looking to recruit, and know nothing of “life before internet.”

The Basics
Born between 1998 and today, 69 million strong — they fill nearly a quarter of the U.S. Population.(1)

Fully Digital
The first generation with no knowledge of LBI — life before the internet, they average 3+ hours per day staring in to a screen.(2)

Practical
79% want internships and professional experience in college; 85% want skills such as financial planning.(3)

Frustrated by Obstacles
82% say finding the best college for them is an obstacle; 63% cite the application process.(4)

Entrepreneurial
63% say entrepreneurship should be part of the college curriculum; 72% say students should be allowed to design their own majors.(5)

Sources: 1. “What if I told you…’Gen Z’ will be larger and more influential than Millennials” http://www.goldmansachs.com/our-thinking/pages/macroeconomic-insights-folder/what-if-i-told-you/report.pdf 2. “Everything You Need to Know About Generation Z,”http://www.businessinsider.com/afp-generationz-born-in-the-digital-age-2015-2 3. Northeastern University Portrait of Generation Z survey, 2014.http://www.northeastern.edu/innovationsurvey/pdfs/Innovation_Summit_GenZ_Topline_Report.pdf 4. Ibid. 5. Ibid.

Developing Healthcare Strategies

Every day, hospital and healthcare clients are running dozens of parallel tracks with their marketing strategies, each with its own purpose, but feeding the overall goals of the institution. At Advance 360, we understand that these plans need to be integrated and in sync to deliver results for our clients.

As such, we segment our strategy and campaign to mirror these parallel tracks within the organization — each with their own key performance indicators that dictate performance success;  from positioning the institution’s expertise to customizing the message, targeting different geographies and audiences.

Learn how we’ve crafted successful campaigns for our healthcare partners.

PRACTICUM: AN ILLUSTRATION ON HOW STRATEGIES ARE BUILT

Client: Community Hospital 

Statement of Need, Provided by Client: The hospital, employing 1100 staffers, was suffering from years of disjointed marketing, high turnover among the c-suite staff and vanishing public trust; all of which was punctuated by the lowest employee engagement scores that the institution had experienced, creating poor morale. Not surprising, market share was slipping and profits dropping.

Research and Analysis: We performed a scientific sentiment analysis to understand public perception and trust for the brand and also identify their top competitors for consumer mindshare. We also implemented web, social media and SEO audits, along with an intensive review of creative. Analysis was performed
on employee communications including email open rates, engagement numbers were researched extensively and we analyzed trends over the past five years. Workflow in the Human Resources Department and Marketing Department were reviewed and the onboarding of new physicians was studied. We built a market share analyzation tool to show dips in performance and emerging trends in real time. Six branding workshops with all levels of hospital staff were performed, and sentiment collected. Analysis of influence-able areas (noted from market share tool) was scrubbed against population data to identify priority service areas. Material researched by third party firms over the last 12 years was studied and cataloged.

Findings: The hospital had hundreds upon hundreds of incredibly talented front line staff that were all present for the right reasons. But, long-term unrest around an unstable leadership team had taken its toll on morale and the vast majority were disenfranchised. Service lines that were found to be a priority by the board were confirmed by Advance 360 as those that would create the lift required: neurology, oncology, orthopedics, general surgery. Physician on boarding contained numerous disconnects between new and old staff. An understanding of the “why” of the people inside the hospital and the hospital itself was established. Sagging recruitment had to be revitalized. The website experience contained unfriendly user experience, and the SEO tactics employed fell short of best practices. Paid search was nonexistent. In short, every piece of the hospital’s work was in need of refreshing. Our work needed to be precise and swift, and generate a lift of 7% revenue growth overall (a number determined by the board of directors.)

Action Plan:

  • Advance 360 developed a strategy and campaign for three key segments: internal (staff), external (public) and recruitment (public / conquest) including:

Internal

  • New templates for employee communications and emails.
  • Agenda flow, and production of the annual all staff meeting.
  • Internal staff interviewed and featured in social media, the staff section of the website, and publicly in front of peers.
  • The “speak up” program was revitalized.
  • Infographics and other creative elements were generated to tell the story of the hospital’s community engagements.
  • Employees were pixeled using communications and contesting, and remessaged all of the above information with a purposeful frequency.

Recruitment

  • Website was built to accommodate new traffic.
  • Landing pages established by posted job.
  • Job postings retooled and new placements made.
  • Other community hospitals of similar size were targeted with display campaigns as “feeder locations” for staff.
  • Creative established, using diverse imagery and positions, and placed appropriately to the audiences. In nearly all cases, “high tech” images as well as “emotion/staff subject matter” were A/B tested to maximize impact.
  • Materials were developed for the on boarding process to create the necessary lift.

External

Each service line was assessed and materials developed to achieve the desired lift, for a blended revenue gain of 7%. These included, but were not limited to, infographics, video, whitepapers, sponsored content, articles, blog entries, social media vignettes and photo galleries. Doctors were featured. Overlap with the staff videos from internal campaign were reused in a public sense, based on the service line for which the staff person was employed. Display campaigns were developed with emotion, credibility and logic touch points in mind, and A/B testing was deployed in nearly every instance. Nothing short of a “collection of goods” describing the assets of the hospital, the talents of the staff, procedures that could be provided, and each and every piece pixeled, placed and analyzed.

Researching a College: The Search Process

Education reporter Betsy Hammond of the Oregonian Media Group has seen colleges in her region get better at marketing qualities that make them special. For example, Whitman College, a small, liberal arts school in Walla Walla, Washington, stresses the breadth of its programs, close working relationships with professors, and a year-long “Encounters” program offering freshman a deep dive into the ongoing value of a liberal arts education. Western Oregon University, which stresses accessibility, recently announced affordability grants to help students meet rising costs.

Yet as the parent of a 16-year-old son, Hammond is learning how challenging the search process can be. Rankings often “read as though they were written by someone sitting in an office crunching numbers,” she says. “People feel overwhelmed.”

Are you overwhelmed developing an effective plan to marketing your University?

Download Our Advance 360 E Book on Education

 

Travel Audiences: What’s Important to each Generation

Travel Audiences: What’s Important to each Generation

As marketers, we must be aware of how each generation consumes content to be able to reach them in a more efficient and effective way. In general, marketers should really start focusing on building experiences for travelers – experience being the main focus of every generation of traveler. As the Experience Era of Travel continues to evolve, marketers need to listen to each generation of consumers to adapt their strategies so they speak to each one.

11 Million Auto Buyers Researching Vehicles on Mobile Devices

11 Million Auto Buyers Researching Vehicles on Mobile Devices

Automakers sold 17.5 million cars and light trucks in 2015, which was a record growth in sales, up 5.7% from 2014. While shopping on an auto lot, 63% of shoppers use their mobile device for research. To give some perspective, that means 11 million of the 2015 auto buyers researched on their mobile device while at the dealership.